September 7 & 8, 2018
I started writing this blog onboard ANA flight 11 from Chicago to Tokyo (after beginning the day in Greensboro, North Carolina at 6 a.m.). A long flight, but I’m an aviation geek, so no major complaints from me. The empty seat next to me helped. (I flew on a 777-300, if there are any other fellow geeks out there reading this!)
About halfway through the Chicago – Tokyo flight, the flight attendants had us close all of the window shades. I’ve not been in a coffin yet, but I imagine it would be much like that portion of the flight. More than a few peeks out of the window with a blanket over my head later, I had a nice set of pictures of some of the most beautiful scenery I’ve ever seen. Despite the darkness, the stout ANA coffee and I fought the urge to sleep, staying up for the entire journey so I would crash at the hotel for a decent night’s sleep.
We touched down in Bangkok (on a 787-900 for the geeks) a little after 9 p.m. – a mere 26 hours after boarding my first flight in Greensboro.
Wow, this is a long way from home.
After an insanely easy arrival process that included dealing with a bunch of baggage, making it through immigration, exchanging money, finding a sim card, and negotiating transportation, I was finally on the road to my hotel.
Whoa! Hellooo Bangkok!
Take everything you can think of in a big city, multiply that by 10, and add about a million motorbikes (but only about 50 helmets). Noise, huge buildings, big streets, narrow streets, scents, shops, food carts, cars, tuk-tuks, bikes, people, lights, traffic lanes and flows that operate as suggestions, and more people and cars. Big time sensory overload. But, somehow, everything works. Everything flows. I made it to my hotel without a scratch.